Home Lab Server #2 – HP Microserver Gen8

Server #2 – HP Microserver Gen8

After getting a great deal on my first server for my new homelab I’d been doing some research on a second.

My plan was to use my existing ML10v2 as a “compute” node, running either Hyper-V Server R2 or a standard install of Server 2012 R2 and use my second server more for storage and network management.

My storage server would need to have a fair few empty drive bays for the HDDs that I want to install as i’d also like it to function as a pseudo-NAS box, storing media, ISO’s and other content centrally as well as providing local storage for the Hyper-V nodes.

After rooting around online I found a great rebate deal on an HP Microserver Gen8 on serversplus.com.

The server that I picked up isn’t particularly high spec, with quite a low powered Cerelon CPU and only 4GB RAM, but it does have 4 externally accessible drive bays as well as the option (with a few tweaks and mods) to run the OS off a 2.5 inch HDD or an SSD freeing up the 4 drive bays for data only.

Heres the base spec:

Intel Celeron G1610T (2 core, 2.3 GHz, 2MB, 35W)
4GB RAM
HP B120i Storage Controller
No HDD
No Optical

Its a very base spec model but my requirements are not high at all, I think it’ll so the job just fine.

It was also at a fantastic price. Including VAT it was around £170 delivered, but with a £55 mail in rebate to be applied so it worked out around £115 all in.

Serversplus.com delivered the server the next day and its a great little unit. Its well build, solid and easy to use and setup. Its currently running a test install of Server 2012 R2 with 2 x 2TB drives in a RAID 1 setup but i’m going to rebuild it to use a small SSD as a boot drive and use all 4 bays for data (likely 2 x 2TB and 2 x 3TB drives to give 10TB of raw storage).

I’ve just finished setting up my HP ML10 v2 compute server (just needs more RAM now) so i’ll get this up and running and start sharing some storage.

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